New words – 16 December 2019

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dirty camping noun [U]
UK /ˌdɜː.ti.ˈkæm.pɪŋ/ US /ˌdɝː.t̬i.ˈkæm.pɪŋ/
the activity of leaving rubbish behind or causing damage by having a fire after you have stayed somewhere in a tent

In a summer which has seen the problem of dirty camping becoming increasingly common in rural hotspots across the country, Mountaineering Scotland’s Access & Conservation Officer Davie Black said: “Antisocial camping can and should be dealt with. Hotspots for dirty camping are usually known to local authorities.”
[mountaineering.scot, 15 August 2019]

randonaut noun [C]
UK /ˈræn.də.nɔːt/ US /ˈræn.də.nɑːt/
someone who visits a random location generated by a computer bot in the hope of having an unusual, supernatural or otherwise interesting experience there

Live in one place long enough and you will develop routines, walking the same streets and patronizing the same coffee shops … Randonauts hope to use this tedium to their advantage, by introducing unpredictability. They argue that by devising methods that force us to diverge from our daily routines and instead send us to truly random locations we’d otherwise never think twice about, it just might be possible to cross over into somebody else’s reality.
[www.theoutline.com, 27 August 2019]

air cruise noun [C]
UK /ˈeə.kruːz/ US /ˈer.kruːz/
a journey on an aeroplane for pleasure, either to look at something from the air, or to enjoy activities onboard the aeroplane

“These flights could take the form of ‘air cruises’, which will see travellers fly slowly over areas of special interest, such as the Pyramids, while interactive VR guides give passengers an immersive running commentary. Other options available to passengers travelling on an air cruise include on-board yoga, meditation or art classes.”
[telegraph.co.uk, 31 July 2019]

About new words

New words – 9 December 2019

Jose Luis Pelaez Inc/DigitalVision/Getty Images

slow art noun [U]
UK /ˌsləʊ.ˈɑːt/ US /ˌsləʊ.ˈɑːrt/
a mission to encourage people to take a lot of time to look at a work of art and examine it carefully in order to really appreciate it

“Many people don’t know how to look at and love art and are disconnected from it,” explains Phil Terry, the founder of Slow Art Day. “Visitors to galleries often see art from their iPads or mobile phones and slow art is an antidote to that.”
[www.theguardian.com, 17 August 2019]

hopepunk noun [U]
UK /ˈhəʊp.pʌŋk/ US /ˈhoʊp.pʌŋk/
an art form such as books, movies etc. whose plots and themes are optimistic and hopeful

As you’d imagine, hopepunk fans are generally a very friendly, generous-spirited bunch. I found Ella March … on Reddit. She told me that hopepunk “is a conscious effort to take a positive look at our world and recognise everything that’s good about it”.
[The Sunday Telegraph, 25 August 2019]

walkumentary noun [C]
UK /ˌwɒk.jəˈmen.tᵊr.i/ US /ˌwɑː.kjəˈmen.t̬ɚ.i/
a film or television programme or other event where someone walks around a particular place learning facts and information about the place or someone connected to it

On the back of that poignant anniversary, a “walkumentary” that is available for visiting Gaye fans, during which they can visit the star’s hideouts while watching original footage on an iPod of him in the town, has had a 10% rise in takers in the first six months of this year compared with the same period in 2018.
[www.theguardian.com, 17 August 2019]

About new words

 

New words – 2 December 2019

Westend61/Getty Images

micro-scheduling noun [U]
UK /ˈmaɪ.krəʊ.ʃedjuːlɪŋ/ US /ˈmaɪ.kroʊ.skedʒuːlɪŋ/
the activity of planning your time in a way that accounts for what you will do in every minute of the day

The CEOs have said it: scheduling meetings, lunch breaks and workouts is no longer enough. To hit peak productivity, micro-scheduling is the best option: in other words, planning every minute of your day, down to checking your phone and making tea. It’s all the rage in Silicon Valley: Bill Gates and Elon Musk both split their days into five-minute chunks. And New York-based entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk reportedly plans his day out to the second.
[standard.co.uk, 21 February 2019]

timeboxing noun [U]
UK /ˈtaɪm.bɒk.sɪŋ/ US /ˈtaɪm.bɑːk.sɪŋ/
a technique to manage your time more efficiently that involves planning what you are going to do in every minute of the next week

There are various timeboxing apps and templates out there … but I start by using Google calendar to schedule a week full of tasks. Everything, from what time I start writing to when I walk the dog, is neatly mapped out.
[The Guardian, 12 October 2019]

FONC noun [U]
UK /fɒŋk/ US /fɑːŋk/
abbreviation for “fear of not chilling”: a worried feeling that you may miss the opportunity to stay at home and relax, because you are too busy and are going out a lot

You know you have FONC when your busy schedule causes mild panic about when you’ll have time to treat yourself to some necessary R&R. “It’s kind of the opposite of saying yes to everything,” says Kott … “It’s like, I’d rather be home chilling or chilling with friends. If there’s a really busy week, or a really busy few days of the week in a work sense, then I try to allow space for relaxation,” she says.
[standard.co.uk, 21 February 2019]

About new words

New words – 25 November 2019

vm / E+ / Getty

laughter club noun [C]
UK /ˈlɑːf.tə.klʌb/ US /ˈlæf.tɚ.klʌb/
an organization of people who meet regularly to laugh together as a form of therapy

It’s no joke. Laughter clubs exist all over the country. They’re run by “certified laughter leaders” – often psychologists, therapists, and psychiatrists – who are trained in the healing benefits of laughter. These workshops can help you connect with others as you get in a good laugh.
[www.rd.com/health/wellness, no date]

entertrainment noun [U]
UK /en.təˈtreɪn.mənt/ US /en.t̬ɚˈtreɪn.mənt/
fitness classes that combine exercise with entertainment, designed to make exercise more fun

So, how do we navigate this confusing world of entertrainment? How to sort off the marketing gimmicks from the genuinely useful concepts? Firstly, it’s worth repeating Beverley’s line: movement is good for you, and if fun, faddy classes help get you working out, then that’s probably a good thing. Don’t beat yourself up about loving entertrainment if it works for you.
[www.telegraph.co.uk, 22 March 2019]

sober bar noun [C]
UK /ˈsəʊ.bə.bɑːʳ/ US /ˈsəʊ.bə.bɑːr/
a bar where no alcoholic drinks are served

Many of the wave of sober bars are new, and it remains to be seen whether they will continue to proliferate and thrive. In Auckland in 2015, an alcohol-free bar shut down after just five weeks. But there’s no doubt that interest in non-alcoholic adult beverages is increasing across the beverage industry, and that’s unlikely to stop soon.
[bbc.com/worklife, 19 July 2019]

About new words

New words – 18 November 2019

facial fingerprint noun [C]
UK /ˌfeɪ.ʃᵊl.ˈfɪŋ.gə.prɪnt/ US /ˌfeɪ.ʃᵊl.ˈfɪŋ.gɚ.prɪnt/
the pattern of lines and other markings on someone’s face that is different in every person and can be used for identification purposes

Unless you have an unshakeable faith in the incorruptibility of our own state – which, judging by the wider mood, most of us don’t – it seems bafflingly reckless to offer up your face to be logged. Yet more than 150 million people, so far, have downloaded FaceApp. Millions more have handed over their facial fingerprints in order to unlock their smartphones more easily, or to activate Apple’s cute little Animojis.
[www.telegraph.co.uk, 18 July 2019] Continue reading “New words – 18 November 2019”

New words – 11 November 2019

Dougal Waters / DigitalVision / GettyImages

breatharian noun [C]
UK /breθ.ˈeə.ri.ən/ US /breθ.ˈer.i.ən/
someone who believes that by doing a special type of breathing exercise they can get all the nutrients they need from air and do not have to eat solid food

Audra Bear identifies as a breatharian and claims she fasts for up to 97 days because food gets in the way of her enjoyment of life. Despite the dangers and lack of any scientific backing whatsoever that it works, Audra, 25, insists that it is good for her. She has tried various diets over the years including being a vegan then a raw vegan for four years before taking on so-called pranic living and breatharianism.
[Metro, 28 June 2019] Continue reading “New words – 11 November 2019”

Cambridge Dictionary’s Word of the Year 2019

Our Word of the Year 2019 is . . . upcycling.

This word was chosen based on the Word of the Day that resonated most strongly with fans on the Cambridge Dictionary Instagram account, @CambridgeWords. The word upcycling – defined as the activity of making new furniture, objects, etc. out of old or used things or waste material – received more likes than any other Word of the Day (it was shared on 4 July 2019). Continue reading “Cambridge Dictionary’s Word of the Year 2019”

New words – 4 November 2019

Morsa Images / DigitalVision / GettyImages

microworker noun [C]
UK /ˈmaɪ.krəʊ.wɜːkəʳ/ US /ˈmaɪ.kroʊ.wɝːkɚ/
someone whose job is to carry out a number of small but important tasks online that need human input and cannot be done by a computer

Two years ago she swapped her dental practice for online work as part of the global army of hidden “microworkers” – performing tasks that machines alone cannot. Think of a day in your “digital life”. Whether it’s your phone’s search engine recommending relevant restaurants or a music app’s suggested playlist – none of this would be possible without microworkers.
[www.bbc.co.uk/news, 2 August 2019]

slashie noun [C]
/ˈslæʃ.i/
someone who has several different jobs at the same time, from the use of the slash (/) in, for example, writer/dog walker/barista

Sam Gray is a so-called “slashie” … She’s a former teacher living in Torquay, and currently works five different jobs. In addition to her own dog-grooming business, Toodles, Sam works as a private tutor, teaches crochet and sells patterns, works security for nightclubs and bars and works two 12-hour night shifts at a local arcade.
[www.bbc.co.uk/news, 22 April 2019]

micro-bonus noun [C]
UK /’maɪkrəʊ.ˌbəʊnəs/ US /’maɪkroʊ.ˌboʊnəs/
a small amount of money made available by a company for employees to give to their colleagues as a reward for good work

Former employees of businesses that use the micro-bonus peer-to-peer system aren’t quite of the same opinion, with claims it’s “open to abuse”, as well as the fact that it can result in a popularity contest and diminish the value of the work you do, by making it seem like you’re purely working for tips.
[www.executivegrapevine.com, 17 May 2019]

About new words

New words – 28 October 2019

Marco Bottigelli / Moment / Getty

undertourism noun [U]
UK /ˌʌn.də.ˈtʊə.rɪ.zəm/ US /ˌʌn.dɚ.ˈtʊr.ɪ.zəm/
the situation when a city or other holiday destination does not receive many tourists or enough tourists

But a new phenomenon is developing. “Undertourism” is the increasingly common marketing tactic being used by less-frequented destinations. Come here, they say, because we’re not as rammed as the neighbours. Visit us, and you won’t have to queue for your Instagram likes.
[www.nationalgeographic.co.uk, 12 August 2019]

DNA trip noun [C]
/ˌdiː.enˈeɪ.trɪp/
a holiday taken by someone who has taken a DNA test to trace their ancestry, to a destination where their ancestors came from, according to that test

But to really dive into your DIY DNA trip, you will want a full-featured travel web site. Travel sites started out more than 20 years ago as search engines for the cheapest airline tickets or bargain hotel rooms. Thankfully for the DNA traveler, things have come a long way since those days.
[www.bestonlinereviews.com, 27 March 2019]

begpacker noun [C]
UK /ˈbeg.pæk.əʳ/ US /ˈbeg.pæk.ɚ/
someone who goes on holiday and begs for money from local people

Authorities in Thailand, Indonesia, and other countries are cracking down on “begpackers”: usually young Westerners who ask locals for money to help fund their journeys. Some of the travelers sell photographs or perform songs on sidewalks, while others simply ask for quick handouts… The locals to who give begpackers money are often poorer than the travelers.
[www.businessinsider.com, 25 July 2019]

About new words

New words – 21 October 2019

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serial returner noun [C]
UK /ˌsɪə.ri.əl.rɪˈtɜːnəʳ/ US /ˌsɪr.i.əl.rɪˈtɝːnɚ/
someone who buys a lot of clothes online and returns all or most of them, usually because the company allows them to do this for free

I have always been a serial returner. I order clothes, try them on and send them back. I am not alone. Now stores, which have attracted consumers with generous pledges of free delivery and returns, have begun to tighten their policies.
[www.theguardian.com, 15 May 2019]

crow noun [C]
UK /krəʊ/ US /kroʊ/
someone who is invited to attend a fashion show and sit in the front row, usually because they work in fashion or are a famous singer, actor, etc.

At the recent month of fashion shows, front-rowers – known as “the crows” for their attachment to wearing black – were instead clad head to toe in shades of chocolate, caramel and mahogany.
[The Times, 20 October 2018]

pre-clashed adjective
/ˈpriːˌklæʃt/
(of a single piece of clothing) featuring different patterns, such as spots and stripes

Fashion is having an ambivalent moment and, with shoppers apparently unwilling or unable to choose between two distinct designs, the trend for “pre-clashed clothes” is growing. At high street retailer Zara, there are dresses with ditsy prints alongside big swirling florals, as well as wrap dresses in contrasting colour blocks, usually with a vertical split.
[www.theguardian.com, 1 February 2019]

About new words